Facts about cats:Why Do We Find Cats So Fascinating

It is obvious to any internet user that cats are very popular as both loving pets and hilarious internet videos. The big question is, why? Why do we love to watch clips of cats doing clumsy things, and why do they evoke such strong emotions in us, both love and fear? The answer takes us back to our ancestors in ancient Egypt. In a culture where everyday things and creatures took on strong symbolism, cats were worshiped for their ability to eradicate vermin, a big problem for storing food, as well as hunting other creatures associated with evil and darkness, such as snakes. They were also seen as higher beings, because they possessed such heightened senses. Anyone who has watched a cat slink along in a silent stalk, or balance with ease on a rail-thin fence can see the other-worldly part of these creatures. Along these same lines though is another big question: why do cats evoke awe and praise from some, and fear and suspicion from others? Again we look to our history for the answer. During the 17th century, a time when witch hunting became popular, cats were seen as evil for some of the very reasons they were worshiped by the Egyptians. Because they are nocturnal, they were said to be the messengers and servants of witches, and the senses that made them amazing hunters were seen as mystical and strange. Interestingly, because so many cats were killed or driven away during this time, the Black Plague, which was spread by fleas on rats and other rodents, became widespread and prevalent, and could possibly have been mitigated by keeping cats around. In our culture today, cats are still both loved and despised. Humans tend to relate better to dogs because of the similarities in their natural behavior to our own behavior, such as forming packs and submitting to a leader. Cats on the other hand are naturally solitary creatures, and though domestic cats can easily bond with their human family and other pets in the home, they are still mostly perceived as aloof, indifferent, and callous. This is probably why we love to see them make mistakes, fall, and get scared. It lets us see that they are not perfect, that even this elegant, graceful creature is ungainly at times. It lets us see the “human” side of them. And finding ourselves in others is our way of connecting with the world.

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